Types of Stretch Fabric
The fabric we’re probably most familiar with is spandex. Because of its unrivaled capacity to stretch, it swept the textile industry by storm (as much as 5-8 times its normal size). The amount of elastane in it determines how much it can stretch. The elastane percentage of most spandex comfort wear is between 1 and 5%. In sports apparel, the percentage rises to 12-15 percent.
Some individuals mix up spandex with Lycra fabric, believing they are the same thing. I used to think that spandex was a brand name, but it’s actually an umbrella phrase for any fabric with a lot of stretch and flexibility. Spandex is created from elastic and a base material such as wool, cotton, or nylon. Lycra is a sort of fabric.
When spandex is mixed with other fibers, the elasticity of the fabric is increased by 2-20%.
Cotton Spandex Blend
The smoothness of this material is well-known. It normally has a spandex content of 3-5 percent. It’s adaptable enough to be utilized in skirts, dresses, and shirts since it can stretch in all four directions.
Slinky knits are textiles made from a combination of synthetic fibers and Lycra. These are generally termed by the main material used to make them, so you may get cotton slinky knits as well.
Nylon Spandex Blend
This term is commonly applied to various types of sportswear, including sports bras, swimwear, and more. Cycling winners frequently wear this material, so you’ll likely see a lot of it the next time you watch the Tour de France. The majority of stretchy nylon mixes include 15% spandex. Certain textiles, such as Tricot and other similar brands, contain between 25 and 50 percent spandex.
Rayon Knit Spandex
The smoothness of rayon spandex makes it feel like silk. While it’s a very form-fitting material, it’s also really comfy. Bamboo rayon, in particular, has a silky smooth sensation against the skin.
Polyester Spandex Blend
It’s incredible how many garments are made, at least in part, of polyester. This low-cost fabric can even be mixed with spandex. It’s a popular choice for sewing leggings, costumes, and dancewear since it’s so light.
When people want to sew anything that seems like it’s made of leather, they choose to use polyester spandex. For furniture, there’s even a polyester-spandex combination. You wouldn’t want to use it on clothing because it has a foam backing. Unless you’re constructing a very unique outfit.
This synthetic fiber-based material is frequently used to create furniture that resembles real leather. It’s a wonderful choice for accessories like belts when it’s utilized for clothes. Faux leather shirts and vests are also available on occasion.
Stretch denim uses spandex or similar elastic component to offer give and flexibility to the fabric. Skinny jeans are frequently made of stretch denim.
The material is a mix of spandex, cotton, and polyester. Jeans, dresses, and skirts are frequently made of stretch denim.
Cotton Poplin Stretch
The stretch in this fabric is just approximately 10%. However, it is still really comfy. This fabric, which is comprised of cotton, spandex, and, you guessed it, poplin, has been used to make several shirts.
Many people are unfamiliar with this fabric, which is mostly employed in the production of undergarments. It has the consistency of netting with a considerable number of elastane fibers mixed throughout, as the name implies. You may extend it in all ways.
When you have flexible lace, you can accomplish a lot with it. This material is commonly used in lingerie and evening attire, as well as dresses, skirts, and fitted blouses. Stretch-lace leggings aren’t unheard of, either. Elastic and synthetic threads are used to weave this fabric.
This fabric also has a shiny appearance, making it a popular choice for folks who wish to build costumes. It features a napped surface and around 15% elasticity, making it perfect for dancewear.
The majority of knit fabrics have some “give,” generally in the form of a two-way stretch (more on that after we cover all the fabric types). Knit materials are useful for sewing many types of clothing since they are relatively elastic. Here’s a short rundown of the many sorts of knitted fabrics you’ll come across when shopping for fabric for your next sewing project.
Jersey is exceptionally pleasant to wear, so it’s no surprise that it’s the preferred fabric for T-shirts. This light to medium-weight cloth is frequently used in athletics and other casual apparel. Jersey is smooth on the outside and drapes over the body, so it isn’t very form-fitting.
French terry is a knit fabric that has a little elasticity to it. Many sweatpants and hoodies are made of this cloth. This smooth, easy-to-clean fabric is both comfy and easy to clean. It’s a go-to for producing loungewear since it’s low-maintenance. It’s also pretty straightforward to deal with because it’s a medium-weight material.
Rubber may be used to manufacture a restricted number of garments. Even though it’s elastic, this material is tough to put on and not the most comfortable to wear. However, because it’s water-resistant, it’s ideal for items that keep you dry in wet weather or underwater.
It’s also common in medical institutions. Rubber can irritate your skin when it comes into close touch with it, not to mention the fact that certain people are sensitive to latex. Another reason there aren’t many rubber-based clothing items is because the material is exceedingly tough to work with.
Another downside of rubber is that it cannot be dry-cleaned because the rubber corn yarns will be damaged.
Neoprene rubber is used in a variety of products, from clothes to electronics boxes. This stuff isn’t rubber; it’s a synthetic polymer that looks a lot like it. It’s available in a number of thicknesses, and while it’s most commonly seen in scuba divers’ wet suits, it’s also being employed in a variety of other goods and accessories.
As you can see, there are many different types of stretch textiles available. That implies you’ll be able to express yourself via your sewing endeavors. You not only have a vast supply of stretch fabrics, but they also come in a variety of colors and patterns.
You have a lot of options. Many stretch fabric alternatives depending on your project, so you can manufacture two or three of the same outfit with various stretch fabrics.